Final Paper: Learning Theory

Human Learning and Development and Web-Based Educational Technology

Liberty University

Customized Learning Theory Paper

EDUC 500



A Christian educator engages in the love of teaching to make a difference in a student’s life. Also, an educator should have a passion for teaching and willing to demonstrate the love of Christ. In 1st Cor. 16:14 it says “Do everything in love” and in Gen. 1:27 it says “God created human beings in his image.” We display His images as we use our unique freedom and abilities (Van Brummelen, 2009, pp. 100).

Discovering how children grow, adapt, and develop within their environment promotes different learning styles. Learning is the key fundamental element in human development. Teaching intends to promote learning; learning takes place through experience, and in humble dependence on God (Van Brummelen, 2009).

The contribution of Jean Piaget influences the study of human development, and his work forms an essential basis for understanding child development (Slavin, 2015). Lev Vygotsky proposes cognitive development linked to input from others and learning precedes development (Slavin, 2015). Urie Bronfenbrenner believed a child development is affected by social and institutional influences (Slavin, 2015, pp. 42).

Lemley, Schumacher and Vesey (2014) notes, it is of the utmost importance that educational institutions continue to adapt to the needs of students as society changes. It is imperative that schools adapt the learning environment to reach 21st-Century students

(Lemley et al., 2014).

This paper seeks to focus on incorporating current technology in the classroom-learning environment. Also, this paper will examine the digital age of the 21st-Century Web. My customized learning theory involves using web-based educational technology and students learning abilities to communicate outside of the classroom while being in the classroom.

Learning Theory and Its Importance

Teaching is a multifaceted activity (Kennedy, 2006, pp. 205). Aristotle famously said, Teaching is the highest form of understanding (Boyer, 1990, pp. 23) (Cho & Zachmeier, 2015, pp. 157). How people learn is the single most practical and relevant knowledge, which the educator can attain (Winne, 1977, pp. 87).

Various learning theories explored over the past century. The aim of the research is to test the various theories that guide the actions of teachers and others involved in education. Also, without theories, the facts and principles discovered would be disorganized and theories tie together facts and principles to give teachers a big picture (Slavin, 2015, pp. 11).

The behavior learning theories focus on the consequences of one’s behavior. The social learning theories focus on the effects of one’s thought on action and action on thought. The cognitive learning theories focus on the mental process that people use to learn and remember new information or skills (Slavin, 2015).

Interactions between teachers and students play an important role in shaping whether the cognitive demand of tasks is maintained or declines during their enactment in the classroom (Henningsen & Stein, 1997) (Kisa & Stein, 2015, pp. 111). Kennedy (2006) states, teaching depends on two important things. A repertoire of strategies and rules of thumb for responding to unanticipated events and ability to envision how a series of acts and scenes can lead to satisfying denouements.

The use of blended learning may help encourage greater student learning outcomes, and blended learning is a continuous flow between in-class and online learning environments (Cottle & Glover, 2011). Also, blended learning is the classroom face-to-face learning experiences with online learning experiences (Cottle & Glover, 2011, 205).

Description of an Effective Teacher and Learning Environment

Effective teachers know their subjects, communicate their knowledge to students, and how to apply the principles of effective teaching (Slavin, 2015). Effective teachers accomplish tasks involved in effective instruction with warmth, enthusiasm and caring (Slavin, 2015). One of the first requirements of effective teaching is that a teacher understands how students think, and how students’ view the real world (Slavin, 2015, pp. 29).

Instruction or pedagogy is the link between what teachers want their students to learn, and students’ actual learning (Slavin, 2015, pp. 5). Effective instruction demands the use of many strategies. Intentional teachers constantly assess the results of their instruction (Slavin, 2015). Direct instruction is a teaching approach that emphasizes teacher control of most of the classroom events and the presentation of structured lessons (Slavin, 2015, pp. 185).

Students’ learning how to think and the reason, the instructional tasks engage in the classroom (Doyle, 1983) (Kisa & Stein, 2015). The Partnership for 21st Century Skills promotes policies defining and supporting student outcomes that align with today needs. The skills include core subjects, learning and innovation skills, information, media, and technology skills (Slavin, 2015, pp. 9).

Motivation is one of the most important ingredients of effective instruction. Motivation is defined as an internal process that activates, guides and maintains behavior over time (Slavin, 2015, pp. 248). One of the most important types of motivation for education is achievement motivation (Slavin, 2015, pp. 255). Classroom management reflects the strategies for providing effective learning environments that include preventing and responding to misbehavior (Slavin, 2015).

Learning Characteristics

The most important aspect of quality of instruction is the degree to which the lesson makes sense to the students, which the teacher ensure by presenting material in an orderly, organized way (Slavin, 2015, pp. 217). Student diversity requires teachers to provide appropriate levels of instruction (Slavin, 2015, pp. 217). The term within-class ability group is another means of accommodating instruction to student differences in elementary schools (Slavin, 2015). The within-class ability grouping is used within reading groups that divide students, according to their reading performance.

Also, elementary math teachers use multiple groups in the within-class ability grouping. In many math classes, the teacher presents a lesson to the whole class and then meets with two or more ability groups while students are doing seatwork to reinforce skills or provide enrichment as needed (Slavin, 2015, pp. 217). Technology, such as videos, computer graphics, interactive whiteboards, or other digital content, may contribute to the quality of instruction, as hands-on experiences, laboratory exercises, or computer simulation (Slavin, 2015, pp. 217). The role of digital technologies in supporting learning and teaching has replaced non-digital activities (Greenhow, Robelia & Hughes, 2009).

Tailoring instruction precisely to a student’s need provides differentiated instruction (Slavin, 2015). Differentiated instruction is an approach to teaching that adapts the content, level, pace, and products of instruction to accommodate the different needs of diverse students in regular classes (Slavin, 2015, pp. 224). Students can help one another learn while using peer tutoring. Discovery learning encourages students to learn on their own through active involvement with concepts and principles, (Slavin, 2015).

Personal Reflections

The Parkers’ Learning Skills have helped me learn about myself. The Interpersonal Communication, Field-Dependent, and Modalities are about equal in parts. The Action Model and the Teacher (Manager)/Student Task Relationships seems to be equal in the four areas, for one having the ability to manage their students learning. The Leadership/Management Skills for Teachers identifies the defined areas in one’s strengths and weaknesses. The nine areas seem to be equal across the board in planning and the overseeing of learning.

In my opinion, these six charts will give me an in-depth understanding of different learning styles that will help bring cohesiveness or connected with meaningful learning experiences during my educational journey. The Study Skills PreTest/PostTest Comparison Chart results were above 80 in all but one area it was 70. The Parker SSI overall average difference was -1.10. My profile showed a weakness in my health with a score of 66.67, and all other scores were above 81.82.

The Parkers Philosophical Methodology of Learning Profile highest score is Humanism. According to our class material, humanism revolves around the student’s need and interests. This is a belief that the individual has the freedom and right to live in an extreme fashion, change when desirable, and to discover (self-realization) spontaneously. I have learned my weakness and my strengths. No two persons learn in the exactly the same way (Van Brummelen, 2009, pp. 96). Some learn better through visual stimuli; through aural-oral ones; and still others through kinesthetic ones (Van Brummelen, 2009, pp. 97). In my opinion, I believe I learn better through visual and auditory stimuli.


The plain fact of the matter is that all practice in education, as well as in other fields is based on theory (Lindgren, 1959, pp. 333). In addition, if we can face our deficiencies, then we will be able to move on to the creative thinking and improvisation that constitute the preliminary phases of experimentation with new methods (Lindgren, 1959, pp. 336). I believe my deficiencies are my weakness that the Parkers’ Learning Style Profile and the Parkers’ Study Skills Inventory reflected.

The study skills inventory helps me to work on the area that I needed help. I believe this tool help me see the importance of learning at a whole. If I cannot be true to myself and understand me, how can I teach others? In another way, I see this as the Lord is showing me my true self as I was before him in prayer. Although a student may have different needs in learning, an intentional teacher knows how to help their students if they are a tactile, auditory, or visual learner. Students need to experience technology, working in groups, solving problems, and learning to read critically and think creatively (Slavin, 2015, pp. 8-9). Without a doubt, teachers will have to get out of their comfort zone and prepare the stage for the phases of learning.

As a Christian teacher, I will need to understand the various theories of learning. As I learn my learning style, I will be able to understand my students’ learning styles. Being aware of different learning styles and analyzing my preferred learning style(s) that will help me plan a balance of learning experiences (Van Brummelen, 2009).


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